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Trump Cheers Unemployment Report: 'We're Bringing Our Jobs Back'

Trump Cheers Unemployment Report: 'We're Bringing Our Jobs Back'
President Donald Trump, with Director of the National Economic Council Larry Kudlow, left, and other officials, holds a press conference on the economy, in the Rose Garden of the White House Friday (Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images)

Friday, 05 June 2020 11:07 AM

President Donald Trump said he expects the U.S. economy to recover from the coronavirus outbreak even faster than predicted after Friday’s jobs report showed a surprise gain of millions of jobs, but warned against electing Democrats in November.

“The only thing that can stop us is bad policy,” Trump said at a triumphant news conference at the White House, setting aside a week of turmoil over his hostility toward nationwide protests against police brutality.

“Left-wing, bad policy of raising taxes and green new deals,” he said.

"We're bringing our jobs back," Trump said of his administration. "I think we're actually going to be back there higher next year than ever before."

The country’s labor market unexpectedly bounced back in May, with nonfarm payrolls rising 2.5 million after falling 20.5 million in April in the largest drop on record. The jobless rate fell to 13.3% from 14.7%, defying economists’ expectations it would reach 19%.

The numbers signaled that the U.S. economy is recovering faster than expected from the damage wrought by the coronavirus pandemic. But the president now faces a second crisis in the police brutality protests that continue to grip cities nationwide.

“It is a stunner by any stretch of the imagination!” Trump tweeted about the jobs report, before announcing he would hold a news conference at 10 a.m.

Economists had predicted a decline of 7.5 million jobs in the unemployment rate to 19%. No one in Bloomberg’s survey had projected an improvement for either metric.

The numbers underscored the reasoning behind the White House’s refusal to issue a formal economic forecast this summer, a part of the budget process designed to judge whether the administration’s beginning-of-the-year projections are holding up. A person familiar with the matter said the unprecedented nature of the outbreak made a mid-year forecast impossible to issue.

The May jobs report could also roil the debate over the timing and scope of additional economic stimulus, with Democrats calling for more aid to reverse the downturn and Republicans taking a wait-and-see approach.

While the numbers signaled good news for Trump, who has fallen behind presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden in polls in part due to the pandemic, the protests have created new headwinds for the president.

Demonstrations swept U.S. cities for a 10th consecutive night on Thursday over the killing of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, in police custody in Minneapolis. Trump has expressed sympathy over Floyd’s death but has focused on restoring “law and order” after protests in some cities turned violent and has not shown support for broad reforms of police behavior.

Video of a confrontation between Buffalo police and an elderly demonstrator went viral on Thursday. The man was seen lying on his back with blood pooling underneath his head after being shoved backward by a police officer.

And Trump continues to face criticism over his decision to stage a photo op holding a Bible in front of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Washington, after federal officers forcibly cleared peaceful demonstrators from the surrounding area. After Senator Lisa Murkowski, an Alaska Republican, aligned herself with scathing criticism of Trump’s approach to the protests from his former defense secretary, James Mattis, the president said Thursday he would campaign against her re-election in two years.

© Copyright 2020 Bloomberg News. All rights reserved.


   
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President Donald Trump said he expects the U.S. economy to recover from the coronavirus outbreak even faster than predicted after Friday's jobs report showed a surprise gain of millions of jobs, but warned against electing Democrats in November.
trump, unemployment
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2020-07-05
Friday, 05 June 2020 11:07 AM
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